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Micronesia has a total population of approximately 525,000, a high birth rate and one of the highest percentages of people under the age of 18. The people of the eastern and central islands are mainly of Melanesian descent. The people of the western islands are generally of Southeast Asian descent. The Micronesian tribes and peoples evolved in a relatively isolated environment so that they could maintain their indigenous culture for a long time. The Chamorro of the Mariana Islands were the only ones who were more or less forced to form a mengrass with the Spaniards as early as the seventeenth century. The Northern Mariana Islands and Guam are also home to many immigrants from countries outside Micronesia.

The Marshall Islands had 74,539 inhabitants in July 2017. This means that approximately 412 inhabitants per km2 live on the islands. The majority of the population lives on Majuro (about 50%) and Ebeye (about 25%). As elsewhere in Micronesia, rapid population growth is a major problem. More than 92% of the inhabitants of the Marshall Islands are indigenous. The rest of the population consists of a small number of Americans and Australians.

The Marshall Islands have a very young population. About half of the residents are under the age of 25 and only 4% of the residents are 65+. The population is growing rapidly, by 1.55 per cent in 2017 and the number of children born per 1,000 inhabitants is about 24. The average life expectancy is 73.4 years.


Galbraith, K. / Micronesia
Lonely Planet

Levy, N.M. / Micronesia handbook Moon

CIA - World Factbook

BBC - Country Profiles

Last updated May 2024
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